Tag Archives: Presentation of Christ

Simeon knew.

Lighting candles before Vigil this evening, for the Feast of the Presentation of Christ in the Temple. This commemoration marks the end of the Christmas season, when 40 days after birth Jesus was presented in the temple in Jerusalem to fulfill the law of Moses. The Prophet Simeon knew by the Spirit that the child was the Christ, the Messiah, and he took him in his arms and said,

“Lord, now let Thy servant depart in peace, according to Thy word, for mine eyes have seen Thy salvation, which Thou hast prepared before the face of all people: a Light to enlighten the Gentiles, and the glory of Thy people Israel.”

St. Simeon, St. Bridget, and my sweet flower.

daphne-eve-of-presentation-17Today was the first time that the daphne scent got my attention all on its own, as I came back from errands and was unlocking my front door. Before today, I had to kneel down on the mulch and get my nose right up to it, but now there are more blooms, and they are more fully opened. If the weather warms up a bit that should make them even more noticeable.

This highly aromatic plant was introduced to me by a neighbor when I was in labor of childbirth with my daughter Pippin – Gayle brought me a vase of the flowers that were in bloom then, around Valentine’s Day, and the sweetness in the air highlighted the divine atmosphere that I always feel when we are waiting to meet a new baby.

I always understood that daphne is hard to grow in our area. I don’t remember why that is, but I never attempted it. Then last summer Landscape Lady suggested it for this spot in my front garden, and I was thrilled at the possibility. Originally we thought to have a whole row of them under the living room window, but her fellow designer cautioned against that much investment in a risky business, so I just have the one. And it is healthy and making lots of flowers so far!

I’m posting it here in honor of Saint Bridget of Ireland, whose feast this is, but also for the Feast of the Presentation of Christ in the Temple, which is tonight/tomorrow — and also for dear Saint Simeon who took Jesus in his arms and knew immediately that He was the Christ. The Lord had told Simeon that he would not die until he had seen The Lord’s Anointed, so as he was cradling his infant Savior he said, “Lord, now let Thy servant depart in peace, according to Thy word, for mine eyes have seen Thy salvation, which Thou hast prepared before the face of all people: a Light to enlighten the Gentiles, and the glory of Thy people Israel.”

It’s one of my favorite feast days.

The Glory of Thy People Israel

This morning I’m putting up my post of two years ago today, 
essentially unchanged but maybe slightly improved. 
A blessed feast to all!
 

My Favorite Neglected Feast

Today is one of the Twelve Great Feasts of the Orthodox calendar, The Presentation of Christ in the Temple; therefore I think it excusable if I postpone tackling many pressing mundane tasks and meditate a little longer on one of my favorite celebrations.

As long as I can remember, the story of Christ being presented in the temple as an infant has brought tears to my eyes, because of the constancy and joy of Simeon, a “just and devout man” who had throughout a long life been waiting and praying for the Messiah. His words express a single-minded heart — his purpose in faithfully waiting had been fulfilled. What a sweet reward, to be the one to receive and hold the Christ!

When Jesus was brought to the temple at 40 days old, according to the law, Simeon (Luke Chapter 2) “… took he him up in his arms, and blessed God, and said, ‘Lord, now lettest Thou thy servant depart in peace, according to Thy word: For mine eyes have seen Thy salvation, which Thou hast prepared before the face of all peoples, a light to enlighten the Gentiles, and the glory of Thy people Israel.’ ”

Thanks to Deb, I found this series of very informative postings that Matt wrote, linking all the events of this day through history, including Groundhog Day, which I will now always remember, in the background. (I did love that movie, whose lesson of humility is applicable throughout the secular or church year.) It is a neglected feast, our priest noted this morning, though our numbers weren’t too small this morning for Divine Liturgy.

The festivities spill over to February 3rd when we give a whole day to commemorating Simeon and the Prophetess Anna. It’s been a happy thing to find that Orthodoxy takes plenty of time for rejoicing in an event that has long been a resting place to me along the path that we call our salvation history.

Candlemas is another name for the holy day, and the church East and West has traditionally blessed candles on this day. I love candles as much as anyone, and I left the church with a handful to burn at home and in that way to stretch out the joy for a good while, brightening and lightening up these winter days.

My Favorite Neglected Feast

Today is one of the Twelve Great Feasts of the Orthodox calendar; therefore I think it excusable if I postpone the many pressing mundane tasks and meditate a little longer on one of my favorite celebrations.

As long as I can remember, the story of Christ being presented in the temple as an infant has brought tears to my eyes, because of the constancy and joy of Simeon, a “just and devout man” who had throughout a long life been waiting and praying for the Messiah. His words express a single-minded heart–his purpose in faithfully waiting had been fulfilled. What a sweet reward, to be the one to receive and hold the Christ!

When Jesus was brought to the temple at 40 days old, according to the law, Simeon (Luke Chapter 2) “… took he him up in his arms, and blessed God, and said, ‘Lord, now lettest Thou thy servant depart in peace, according to Thy word: For mine eyes have seen Thy salvation, which Thou hast prepared before the face of all peoples, a light to enlighten the Gentiles, and the glory of Thy people Israel.’ ”

Thanks to Deb, I found this series of very informative postings that Matt wrote, linking all the events of this day through history, including Groundhog Day, which I will now always remember, in the background. (I did love that movie, whose lesson of humility is applicable throughout the secular or church year.) It is a neglected feast, our priest noted this morning, though our numbers weren’t too small this morning for Divine Liturgy.

Candlemas is another name for the holy day, and the church East and West has traditionally blessed candles on this day. I love candles as much as anyone. It’s been a happy thing to find that Orthodoxy has a whole day and an important feast that commemorates one of my favorite events in our salvation history. I leave carrying candles to burn at home and stretch out the joy for a good while, brightening and lightening up these winter days.